As I mentioned several posts ago, 2009 has arrived and with it the looming need to figure out exactly what my marketing objectives are this year. For 2008 I had a series of baseline from the previous marketing person. I didn't know enough about what had taken place to know whether these items were going to be easy or hard to accomplish so I settled on increasing most of the baseline numbers by either 25, 50 or 100%. I knew I'd make press release numbers by the very fact that I control how many press releases get set out. So that one I just had to hope there would be enough to write about. There was more than enough so that one was done. With our number of newsletter subscribers making our target got a lot easier when I asked myself how were newsletter subscriptions getting from our website to the newsletter contact system. Answer - they weren't - and immeidately over a 1000 new subscribers went in the system. And now new subscribers register at a rate of 2-3 per day on average which is a great steady stream.
Then I got down to the tricky stuff - how do I get articles placed, convince other websites to link to us and increase media mentions. And there was one simple answer - Research. IN 2008 we published a research study on Technical Women in the Workplace and it took off like a bottlerocket. We got coverage from all the major press and requests came in for interviews and speaking engagements (which continue to today). I strongly recommend research as being key to any non profit's success in advertising. Even if it is internal qualitative research - if you can come up with a few key figures you have something to offer a fact starved media - and they'll cover you for it.
So as I look at my 2009 quantitative objectives I have to wonder - will lightening strike twice. Will our new mini research reports take off like our big one did? And will people keep signing up for the newsletter? And what number should I set as a target because as all sales and marketers know - once you write a number down it can haunt you for a long time.